Kid Friendly Restaurants in Pittsburgh
Remember when you were a kid and you couldn’t wait until you were all grown up so you could eat whatever you wanted when you wanted? Well, now that I’m all grown up (that’s my story and I’m sticking to it) I can eat my dessert first or at least I can talk about my desserts first right? On my very first visit to Pittsburgh, heck it was my first visit to Pennsylvania state too, I got to try out several kid friendly restaurants in Pittsburgh and other fun eateries. Oh, what a delight for this foodie but because I like my desserts I’m going to start with them first and work my way down the list.
This is my favourite photo that I took while in Pittsburgh. It was taken from a stairwell from PNC Park the Pittsburgh Pirates baseball team’s stadium. Yes I did go to a game, more on that in another article.
One of my last kid friendly restaurant in Pittsburgh that I had the pleasure of trying was the Milkshake Factory which yes had amazing milkshakes from what I saw but oh the variety of chocolates. I have a weakness for dark chocolate with caramel or nuts or both and chocolate covered strawberries oh my. Don’t tell my family but I enjoyed a nice variety of chocolates all to myself and no I didn’t bring any home for them because they would have melted anyway, right?I was with a large group that had adults and kids of all ages so our group made the line-up quite long but as I looked back at the line-up there were suddenly several people who weren’t a part of group there. At past 8pm at night, it was most certainly a popular venue for those seeking out a sweet treat to delight their tastebuds. I have to admit I was like a kid in an um well candy store because hello Milkshake Factory. Watching the kiddos press their noses up to the glass trying to decide what they wanted was fun itself. When I say kids I mean of all ages from 2 to 42 and beyond. I personally had such a hard time deciding that I asked one of the Milkshake Factory people to select for me based on what I liked. They did well because I enjoyed every single bit of the delicious high-quality chocolate to the fresh strawberry yum! While the lighting at this eatery may not be conducive to better photos it does not take away from the pure delight of the taste of their wares.
Kelly O’s Diner
Okay now that we’ve done dessert let’s talk about breakfast. I’m going to break down the kid-friendly restaurants in Pittsburgh by what meal we had so we’ll start with mornings and breakfast. First up Kelly O’s diner in the Strip District. I don’t know why it’s called the Strip District, but don’t worry it’s a family-friendly area from what I saw during the daytime as I was mostly there in daylight hours. Now back to breakfast, first stop as mentioned Kelly O’s diner which has been featured on the Food Network as a one of a kind greasy spoon.Imagine what you think a classic diner would look like and you might not be far off. It’s small, crowded with tables but those tables were full and they have some unique dishes. This placed was packed on a Friday morning at 8:30am and even though they knew our large group was coming we just fit in. It’s obviously it’s a popular place and with the variety of items on the menu it’s no wonder. I’m not a big breakfast eater and when I do eat it, it’s usually later in the morning so it was still too early for me to be making decisions so I went with a classic, the eggs benny. It was good, nothing fancy and not the best one I’ve had but it was good. I can’t say I loved the coffee as it was your classic diner coffee with glass pots on burners. I’m a coffee snob I admit it and some would say not a real coffee drinker as I like my cream and sugar or a good latte or mocha. That said I don’t think people go there for the coffee, they go for the classic feel, decent prices and in my opinion the more interesting dishes like the grilled cinnamon roll with ice cream below. One of my table mates, Lisa from Mom on the Side ordered this scrumptious dishes and I can say scrumptious because I got to have a bite. There are other delectable sounding dishes on the menu that you might not see anywhere else so it’s worth stopping by. Oh and there was the freshest orange juice, like squeezed on the spot by some fancy machine but it was good! We were also treated to meeting Ms. Kelly O herself so naturally, I had to have her pose in a photo with me. She makes my 5 foot 3 frame look tall. She was as sweet as her grilled cinnamon roll. Just a lovely lady.
Next up for breakfast (no not the same day silly) it’s Waffles INCaffeinated located on the South Side of Pittsburgh. As you can imagine there were all sorts of waffles to be had. Another morning to choice to be made for breakfast, this time I did go for something sweet but it was a hard decision between crepes or waffles but given the name I went for waffles. Well the French Toast Waffles that is, it was tasty a bit sweet for me but that’s to be expected as I’m not keen on overly sweet but my daughter would have LOVED this.My table mate Lisa again from Mom on the Side (as there were four of us who sat together a lot as we were the four whose children were not with us. and I won’t say we enjoyed it without our kids but I won’t say we didn’t either) ordered the chicken and waffles. She really does select some yummy looking foods and you know us travel writers we’re always taking photos of food (when it’s not scenery or places) to share. I also got to enjoy a fancy latte at Waffles INCaffeinated, not bad at all and I say that as someone who doesn’t love some of the coffee from some of those big coffee houses whom I won’t name.Lunch and Dinner
Up next lunch and dinner! I’m saying both as all of these could be for both meals and because I’m starting to get lazy here ha ha.
Since we’re speaking of lunches and especially dinners I will mention that these are all kid-family restaurants in Pittsburh but there was also some adult beverages for mom or dad to partake of (responsibly of course) if they so wished. Some did, some didn’t but this momma decided to try one adult beverage at two of the restaurants. Why not I wasn’t driving, my family wasn’t with me and I got to hang out with some new friends also sans kids like Nicky from Little Family Adventure and another fabulous Michelle from Simplify Live Love. One of the many reasons I love trips like this one is meeting other travel writers, sharing the experiences with them and hearing about places they’ve travelled to that I haven’t. Make sure you stop by and check out their sites you’ll love them too.
Primanti Bros – Strip District
So the first restaurant I actually visited in Pittsburgh was Primanti Bros also in the Strip District. While I’m showing a photo of the bar above I actually did not partake in any adult beverages here. I just liked the neon light with their name on it. Primanti Bros is known for the sandwiches that have French fries and coleslaw on them. It’s a Pittsburgh thing apparently. Full disclosure I’m not a sandwich person, I like very few sandwiches and it’s just not a meal I’d seek out but I’m always willing to try something new especially when visiting a new city.I ordered a roast beef with cheese minus the coleslaw as I don’t like coleslaw. I know I’m sounding like a picky eater but I’m really not. The bread was really good, fresh and tasty, as was the roast beef. I know my hubby would love their sandwiches and he would have them with the coleslaw too. I found at first all I could taste was the French fries so I took some of them off. Above is another one of their sandwiches but with the coleslaw on it as well. I can’t remember if this was Nicky’s or Michelle’s sandwich lol but it gives you an idea of what one of their sandwiches looks like with all the fixins.
Hofbräuhaus Pittsburgh – German Cuisine
I’ve actually been to the Hofbräuhaus in Chicago but I was by myself that time and going to one with others is way more fun. Inside the restaurant, there are long tables with benches or chairs. Each restaurant is modeled after the legendary 400+ year-old Hofbräuhaus in Munich, Germany! In fact, Michelle from Simplify Live Love has been to the one in Munich.It was fun to share the food family style with my table mates. We got to try a bit of everything, I have to say my favourite was the potato pancakes and the fried pickles.This kid-friendly restaurant in Pittsburgh was also great for moms and dads as everyone was having a good time and didn’t have to worry if anyone was being too loud as there were exuberant conversations happening all over the restaurant. It’s not a quiet restaurant and as mentioned everything is set up family style but it’s good food, conversation and for those who want it some adult beverages too.Not my beer but naturally one of the parents had to give it a try, after all Germany is known for it’s beer right? Overall a lot of good food is to be had at Hofbräuhaus Pittsburgh and there’s even a beer garden…Last but certainly not least was The Porch Restaurant. This might have been my favourite as I enjoyed the casual but nice atmosphere and it most definitely qualified as a kid-friendly restaurant in Pittsburgh. There were several tables with young kids and the servers just worked their way around them. I like that they believe that the best meals start with the best ingredients – and that means fresh and local. On their rooftop, they nurture an annual garden so that they can use fresh-picked herbs and produce in their kitchen everyday. In addition, their roof is also the home to several bee hives, which help to give them a great supply of honey. They also partner with local producers & distributors like Penn’s Corner Farm Alliance and Wild Purveyors.All of the food looked delicious. I particularly enjoyed my pizza which they bring out on its own pan with some herbs, chili and parmesan on the side to put on as you please. It was simply delicious. The rare-seared tuna niçoise that a few of my table mates ordered also looked simply scrumptious. Everyone seemed to enjoy their appetizers and meals and overall it was a delicious experience. I know it probably seems like all I did was eat in Pittsburgh and I did eat quite a bit. So many wonderful kid-friendly restaurants in Pittsburgh to try so little time. I thoroughly enjoyed trying them all. Next time you’re in Pittsburgh give one or all of them a try!
Make sure to check out travel section for more travel tips and reviews HERE. Stay tuned for our article on all the kid-friendly activities to do in Pittsburgh!
I was invited by Visit Pittsburgh and hosted at the restaurants but this does not guarantee a positive review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.